My son has been playing baseball since 4 years old. It has always been his dream to play in college and maybe be a pro someday. He was recruited to play in his HS junior year, graduated in 2020 with COVID restrictions and the college he was recruited to halted baseball for 2020/2021. He de-committed and took a gap year. Recently, out of the blue, another college heard he was "free" and offered him a great scholarship to come play for them. The school is 2 hours away. We went for a visit, met the coaches, and he seemed genuinely interested and happy that he was once again being highly sought after.
In the meantime, his girlfriend, who is a senior in HS, has had some rough family issues since she was 8 (very abused). We took her in last December when her mother tried to kill her. It has been very stressful to say the least, but I could not let this girl live in the situation she was in (DHS was out 4 times and did nothing). Now, my son has this opportunity and he does not want to take it because he does not want to leave her. We have told him over and over we would make sure she is safe and take care of her, it is only 2 hours away, he might not get this opportunity again, etc. He gets very emotional and I can tell he is torn between his girlfriend and baseball. I have no idea how to help him. My heart is breaking because baseball has been his dream since he could walk and talk. Any advice greatly appreciated.
PS: the girl has no other family, so making her leave really isn't an option.
This sounds like a problem that has to be resolved quickly and it is my belief that you may be too close to the subject to be able to help your son make a wise decision.
I feel sure you probably have no idea what is going on in the girlfriend's mind or how she is reacting to your son's dilemma. How does she treat the subject when they are alone? Only an outsider may be able to find out what is really going on.
Perhaps his high school would be able to recommend a family counselor or maybe family services could help with this.
Sometimes churches have family counselors for members that are having problems like this.
I feel the chance for Baseball may be at a lost , if this girl does not let him go. This is something that will follow him for life, wondering "What If" . It seems that he will not leave her at this time. Is there a way to do both(the two together) while he is in school. There are quite a few young adults who are couples ,that one works and the other goes to school living in the same home/apartment.
I second the idea of getting a family counselor involved. An objective opinion would be very helpful here. That can help you sort out if the girlfriend is the excuse for not playing baseball anymore or if the baseball is being sacrificed for the love of the girl. It will do you no good to be authoritative here as, if he has strong feelings for this young woman, he will probably defend her over all obstacles, including his parents. Young love doesn't always last but everyone knows stories of couples who grew up together and are still together today.
Although they seem young to you, your son and his girlfriend are basically adults, especially your son. You need to shift your parenting style and accept that he is going to make different decisions than you might wish. It could very well be that baseball was a passion but that the year off soured him on the hard work and drive that is needed at a competitive level. You need to get to the bottom of what he really wants and help him achieve it, even if it is not the same dream that he had growing up. At least you know that you raised a kind and compassionate man who will give up whatever he needs to in order to help the ones he loves.
Good luck, I know it is not easy.
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My son is a senior in high school and plays basketball. During his Junior year, he had an awful experience with his basketball coach and he begged us to transfer to another school. We complied and he made the basketball team and finished the season winning Regionals.
Since his sophomore year, he has been approached to play college basketball and has received a few scholarships which we were excited for him. He now says he doesn't want to play basketball and wants to live in the city and attend college there. He has made a few comments that has me believing that his decision is based on the fact that he wants to be close to his girlfriend.
Most recently, he asked if he could live with his girlfriend in his junior year. When I asked him where this is coming from, his replied that her mother suggested it. This is not the first time that something like this has come up, and I struggle with him giving up what I believe is his dream for wanting to protect his girlfriend who gets everything she wants and who's parents are putting the burden on my son to watch over her.
I don't know what to do. I feel like I am grieving for something that I can't quite comprehend. I am not pushing him but I we are constantly having conversations about his college aspirations and I struggle to keep calm when he speaks to me. I was willing to help pay his college expenses and feel that I no longer should since he can graduate debt free and not with $100,000 debt. What do I do?
Perhaps you and your son can have a neutral party like his guidance counselor discuss the situation so both can share concerns and both can feel heard and understood. Perhaps there is a door number 3 so to speak that will allow everyone to feel ok about things. As the adult you may need further counseling or guidance if he ends up making a decision you are unhappy with as the unhappiness is your challenge, not his.